ASUS ZenFone AR - Review

A unique device with niche uses that also delivers on the performance front – ZenFone AR

When ASUS first announced its ZenFone AR during this year’s CES, many were sceptical. It’s understandable, since AR has been around for quite some time but hasn’t flourished. Regardless, the ZenFone AR has more than enough merits to stand on its own.

ASUS hasn’t really strayed away from familiar territory, so you see the same curved back and tapered edge that you typically see with ZenFones. The 5.7-inch device’s back features faux leather for excellent grip in the hand or on any surface. It has a fingerprint sensor that is integrated into the physical home button at the front, while an 8-megapixel camera is also used for the front. Then, there’s the all-important Tricam system at the back.

When it comes to performance, the ZenFone AR may not be world’s number one but it has more than enough power to handle anything that is thrown at it. While in use, we experienced no delays or lag on the AR/VR apps and 3D-graphics heavy games. Thanks to its massive 8GB of internal RAM, you can have multiple apps running behind on the background at the same time and not feel any slowdowns.

ASUS ZenFone AR - ReviewTo better enjoy the AR/VR apps or your favourite mobile games, the ZenFone AR comes with a Quad HD Super AMOLED display and a new five-magnet speaker. Whether it was for gaming or videos, the screen’s display delivers vibrant colours and a very sharp image. As for the audio, while the DTS sound doesn’t quite deliver that surround sound experience, the audio is loud and clear.

ASUS also included a headset ala Google Cardboard style, so that you can use the phone for VR apps. Basically, the box itself is made a part of the headset – simple, yet effective. The problem with it is that there’s no strap to keep it tied, so you’ll have to hold it up with your hands. Also, content is still sparse where VR and AR is concerned.

ASUS ZenFone AR - ReviewDue to its Tricam system, the camera has a few advantages in terms of features. The depth sensing helps with the autofocusing speed, which the ZenFone AR excels at. At the same time, the motion tracking camera allows the camera to better track objects. As for the photo quality, both front and rear cameras deliver excellent sharpness and colour, especially the front camera. However, HDR shots under poor lighting are still quite grainy and while the lowlight mode does better, it drops the resolution significantly.

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